Nintendo 3DS

Nintendo to Unlock 3DS’s 2nd CPU?

Will Nintendo allow developers to access some of the 3DS’s hidden power?

If there were ever a time to consider development for the 3DS, it’d be now. After all, between the 3DS’s autostereoscopic 3D, innovative features, and recent sales spike, the 3DS should be becoming more and more appealing to developers by the hour.  However, should any developers still need a little more incentive, according to a leak published on French site Gamekyo, Nintendo still has an ace up their sleeve they might be willing to play. If the recent rumor is to be believed, Nintendo is going to be opening up the 3DS’s second CPU to developers.


There is a hidden power boost in there. Somewhere.

This second processor, previously dedicated to the 3DS’s operating system, would allow developers to utilize an additional 25% increase in power for their software. Along with this, Nintendo has supposedly found a more efficient way of processing the 3DS’s autostereoscopic 3D as well, resulting in a decreased strain upon the CPU. These two leaks, despite only being rumors, could present developers with that extra edge needed to create truly beautiful and immersing games. And for those developers who prefer downloadable titles to full-length games, it has also been rumored that Nintendo is increasing the maximum storage space for eShop titles from 16MB to 512MB—a rather welcomed move which could revive interest in the admittedly stagnant eShop.

So what do you think? Will developers take advantage of the rumored 2nd CPU? And will this increase in eShop storage space be utilized? Or will these new features be ignored like many of the 3DS’s other innovations?

By on 11 November 2011

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  1. lake says:

    Ohhh well well well.

  2. Neo_Makusha says:

    hell yeah !!!!!!

  3. subarulol says:

    just like you lake. im speechless. Hail Nintendo. Heh. Lets just hope sony can laydown and wither to this.

  4. ledreppe says:

    I always thought 3DS games made use of 2 processors, isn’t the processor dual-core? Anyway, I would really welcome an increase in the memory size limit for downloadable games, it should have been like this at the very start. My concern is that the 3DS will quickly run out of system memory and games would have to be stored on the SD card. Storing them on the SD card doesn’t worry me, it’s whether the games will run from the SD card or not that does, some of my Wii downloads wont run of the SD card directly.

  5. Pseudonymous says:

    Interesting rumour, but rumours are rumours. Could be interesting if true.

  6. seabass978 says:

    Why would nintendo lock up the second cpu for, it should been there for the developers in the first place! Why not give full potential so all games will look beter.

  7. xxbrothawizxx says:

    The E-shop limit was never 16mb. If you look at the original Gamekyo article it clarifies that it was referring to DSiWare.
    Great News in general though!

  8. Zok says:

    I knew it! I knew there was an extra chip or something in there! Interesting they’d wait this long to unlock it though…

  9. Rover says:

    How Big was Golf 3D?

    195 MB

    Guess what that means?
    16 MB limit is a crock of crap.
    The Rumor is fake, we don’t even know the actual size limit this time around if there is one.

  10. Make more online 3DS games! says:

    I don’t think this will make too much difference to be honestly. Great if it dies but I’m not expecting anything massive. Look what capcom have done with resident evil revelations… can’t see anything battering that.

  11. benja(Mii)n says:

    OVER 9000 no comment

  12. Azy says:

    Why would Nintendo make it so games are not as good as they can be from the start? I suppose if they wanted to create the illusion that 3DS keeps getting better but really if this is true then all the games that came out so far arn’t as good as they could have been…….

  13. shawn says:

    3DS specs are on this page.

    Interesting there is also 6 MB of Video Ram and a dedicated 143mhz DSP sound processor. The DSP sound chip is apparently supplied by CEVA as this DSP supplier video show the 3DS floating around a couple of times. (Gamecube and Wii only had 81Mhz DSP sound processor from Macronix). The 3DS is indeed more powerful than the Gamecube.

  14. andy says:

    Azy the other cpu is for online

  15. Chad Hayen says:


    Actually, according to another source which came out after I had written this article, the CPU is dedicated to both the system’s wireless as well as the OS. This unrelated source also states that developers will only be able to reroute the power dedicated to the wireless, and that the power dedicated to the OS will not be accessible. Again, these details came from a source unrelated to the initial leak, which emerged after this article was written.

  16. Joko450 says:

    Wait, if the power was used to direct to the 3DS OS, will this interfere with suspending the game and going to the home menu?

  17. Ty says:

    Hmmm… I wonder how powerful the 3DS would be if it gained both the use of this rumored second processor, and Nintendo lifted the limits placed on the GPU and CPU (they’re under clocked). Battery life would be crap though…

  18. Angel792 says:

    Guys that CPU is dedicated for the home bottom and wireless, so is basically for the stuff that happens in the background, it doesn’t have to do anything about the memory limit of the games.

  19. Shigeru Miyamoto says:

    Nintendo-san confirm this is just rumour. We have no plan to unlock 2nd CPU.

    Instead we drop price by another $100.

  20. Kayriss says:

    I’d welcome this idea if It didn’t sacrifice the home button

  21. Antoine says:

    Check out my unboxing of Skyward Sword ! I’ve also got one of SM3DL !

  22. artum says:

    ok ok so some one plase give me the right answer
    what thet post mean:
    1)ARM 9 CPU at 133 MHz, ARM 7 CPU at 33 MHz(so now is 166 mhz thet go to 25%)
    2)two 266MHz ARM11(thet mean it was 266mhz and now is 533mhz thet go to ”more”then 25%or they not unlock all the second 266mhz jast 25%of him?)
    i know nintendo dont ravel nothing but this is all i find on the web someone?know more?

  23. croxynd says:

    I doubt this is true, if it was why the hell would they allow the 3ds to bomb and not reveal this when times were rough for the system. I’m still expecting a 3ds redesign with two circle pads and the increased in power that this rumor is based of.

  24. maria says:

    now this is cool…….!

  25. Anon says:

    Not releated to this, but the music for the fourth prof layton is immense. Go onto the british nintendo website and find prof layton and the spectres call.

  26. FLUDDzone says:

    hmm…I wonder why they haven’t let them use it already.

  27. kinoshiblaze says:


  28. Darkrai says:

    This is gonna be good 🙂

  29. Grape020 says:

    If i was to make my guess..The second cpu was embedded for the main purpose of interactions with the WII U ( one processor for the graphics processing of the WII U’s information, and one processor to handle the communications to and from the WII U.) This doesn’t mean that developers can not take advantage of the unlocked power for 3ds games, but it was not intended for that purpose.

  30. tit4tat says:

    L0AD OF POPPY COCK DS RANGE HAS ALWAYS BEEN DUAL CPU …qe had custom versions of arm7 and arm9 working as a unit…

    we now have 2x custom arm 11’s again working as a 2x cpu unit THE PICTURE SHOWS 2 DIES TO »»FOOL U«« on 1 of those chips is 2x cpu 1x gpu system bus and co-processors the other is 128mb of FC-RAM…nintendo may well be finding new efficency but opening up some unused cpu is B.S…

  31. Testament says:

    Smart move, now Nintendo needs to make this happen!

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